US Manufacturing Indicates a Strengthening Business Climate

US manufacturing in December 2017

December’s US manufacturing PMI (purchasing managers’ index) stood at 55.1, compared with 53.9 in November 2017, meeting the expectation of 55. The manufacturing PMI showed solid improvement in December.

US Manufacturing Indicates a Strengthening Business Climate

The US manufacturing PMI rose strongly in December, mainly for the following reasons:

  • strong improvement in market and business conditions
  • export order and new order growth rose at a higher rate
  • employment growth in the manufacturing sector remained strong

Improvement in client demand and factory output boosted manufacturing activity in December 2017. Both domestic and overseas demand (ACWI) (VTI) improved strongly, and European, Chinese, and UK export orders rose significantly.

Performance of various ETFs in December 2017

The SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY), which tracks the performance of the S&P 500 (SPX-INDEX), rose nearly 0.7% in December 2017. The PowerShares QQQ Trust, Series 1 ETF (QQQ), which tracks the performance of major technology stocks in the United States, rose 0.4%, and the passage of the tax reform bill by Congress in December 2017 boosted investors’ confidence in the US economy and US businesses. In the next part of this series, we’ll analyze France’s manufacturing PMI in December 2017.